The Office of National Statistics in the UK has recently taken a look at how the over 65s and others use the internet and their interests in online shopping.
Now “over 65s” is a huge category, ranging over two generations in some families. So the differences between those in their 60s and those in their 80s is likely to be marked – not just in internet usage but in needs and desires too.
All that said, there are several factors that could entice marketers to take more account of this sector when planning their campaigns.
- The over 65s may use the internet for various social, research and shopping purposes less than younger age groups, but they are still significant. And numbers are growing.
- 53% of this age group use email
- 34% read news online
- 31% use services related to travel
- 23% use social networks, up by 8% from 2015
- 45% have shopped online in the past 12 months, up by 29% since 2008
- 24% have bought clothes or sports goods online this year
- Around a quarter of this age group say they have bought household goods, travel arrangements, and books/magazines/papers and papers
- Around 10% have bought food or groceries, tickets for events and electronic equipment.
- Fewer again have bought films and music (including downloads), video games/software/upgrades and hardware.
- The next age group, the 55-64s, use the internet significantly more. Of working age, they are likely to have had long-term experience and be comfortable with the ways of the web. And as every year passes more people will enter the 65+ category, possibly with changing tastes and needs, but still with their online experience. So this “grey” opportunity can only grow.